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February 02, 1992|Charles Solomon

THE NATIONAL TRUST COUNTRY HOUSE ALBUM by Christopher Simon Sykes (Pavilion/ Trafalgar Square: $24.95). The often informal photographs in this volume are taken from the collections of families whose houses have been donated to the National Trust. The snapshots of overfurnished Victorian rooms, vast gardens, phalanxes of servants and overdressed gentry celebrate more than a century of upper-class life in homes that range from the rather modest (and rather ugly) Shaw's Corner of George Bernard Shaw to Claydon and Kedleston Hall, Gargantuan palaces that rival Waugh's Brideshead in scale. The genteel eccentricities of such characters as Henry Cyril Paget, Fifth Marquis of Anglesey (pictured above), lead people to shake their heads indulgently and assert "There'll always be an England."

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